Reasons to Visit
Zambia is a safari destination for the connoisseur, boasting a fantastic range of wildlife in its diverse national parks. Many amazing game experiences can be had within the national parks, with lion virtually guaranteed and leopard in abundance. This superb array of game can be appreciated on foot, by car or on the water.
Zambia offers the full range of fascinating, colourful birdlife you’d expect to see on safari, with a range of water based birds in the Lower Zambezi and Kafue National Parks. The Bangweulu Wetlands are one of the few places on the planet where you can see the impressive Shoebill Stork.
An evening cruise on the Zambezi in Livingstone and game viewing from Kafue’s Lufupa River are wonderfully relaxing, but best of all are the water based activities in the Lower Zambezi. Drifting slowly down river, observing elephants coming into drink as the sun goes down is one of the definitive African experiences.
With night drives offered in all of the major national parks, Zambia is arguably the best destination in Africa to observe nocturnal wildlife. The South Luangwa in particular is known for outstanding leopard sightings, and there is a tangible excitement to watching how wildlife behaves after dark.
By any judgement Victoria Falls is an awesome force of nature. During the wet season up to 550 million litres of water cascades over the lip of the Falls each minute, offering an intensely photogenic experience. The spectacle that so bewitched David Livingstone is still equally impressive today.
Walking offers an opportunity to appreciate the birdlife, track animals footprints and learn about the smaller creatures such as a mother and baby warthogs. It makes an excellent contrast to a game drive and allows visitors to understand more about the ecosystems of the South Luangwa.
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Africa and The Indian Ocean
Our Zambia specialists are experienced and passionate about the country - between them they have spent many weeks a year researching new experiences and ensuring everything is of the highest standard. They know Zambia inside out.
Russell NZambia Specialist01993 838 406
GlennZambia Specialist01993 838 522
SteveZambia Specialist01993 838 504
DonnaZambia Specialist01993 838 419
Zambia’s main game areas are the Kafue National Park, Lower Zambezi National Park and the two Luangwa National Parks (North and South).
Distances between the parks are large and the roads poor, so we will usually fly you from one to another.
Walking safaris were pioneered in Zambia and remain a highlight of any safari. We use professional guides teamed with armed scouts and keep group sizes very small. It is also renowned for its night drives which offer the chance to see a myriad of nocturnal life, of which, the highlight is often the leopard.
Finally, it’s possible to do plenty of open 4WD safaris, boat trips and fishing.
The official language is English although more than 72 different languages and dialects are spoken within Zambia.
Camps, hotels and lodges that cater to overseas visitors will serve a very international fare, and the quality of food prepared in the most remote bushcamps amazes visitors. If you do have any special dietary requirements please let your specialist know and we can arrange for the lodges and hotels to cater for your requirements.
Zambia's native cuisine is based on nshima, a cooked porridge made from ground maize. This is usually made thin, perhaps with sugar, for breakfast, then eaten thicker (the consistency of mashed potatoes) for lunch and dinner. For these main meals it will normally be accompanied by some tasty relish, perhaps made of meat and tomatoes, or dried fish. You should taste this at some stage when visiting. Safari camps will often prepare it if requested, and it is always available in small restaurants in the towns. Often these will have only three items on the menu: nshima and chicken; nshima and meat; and nshima and fish.
Tipping is not compulsory but always enthusiastically received if you are happy with the service and would like to tip. We recommend that you tip your guide direct at the end of your stay in camp; as a rough guideline you might tip from US$5-10 per person per night stayed. It is also a nice gesture to give a general camp staff tip; we would recommend a tip of around US$5 per person per night stayed. This should be given to the camp manager to distribute equally amongst the staff or left in the camp's tip box if there is one.
Where restaurant meals are involved, the tipping standard is usually 10% of the bill. Obviously this is very much a rough guide and you are completely free to give whatever you feel is appropriate.
The currency of Zambia is the Zambian kwacha (Kw). The current exchange rate is GBP1 = 8000Kw. The notes are in denominations of 500, 1000, 2000, 5000 and 10,000 and there are coins for smaller denominations. Hotels and lodges will accept payment for food and drinks in either US$ (which they prefer) or Kwacha. Due to a spate of forgeries, nobody in Zambia, including banks, will accept US$100 notes, so it is best to carry smaller denominations. Major credit cards are accepted at larger hotels, shops and restaurants. American Express is widely accepted, with more limited use of Visa and MasterCard.
Conservative casual wear is generally acceptable everywhere, but revealing clothes should be avoided since they may cause offence. Do not take pictures of people without asking permission. Photography within airports and of military installations are not permitted.
Our country specialists can advise on any safety concerns you may have. For current information, please refer to the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website.
'Don't Lets Go To The Dogs Tonight' by Alexandra Fuller is a moving and evocative account of a childhood spent growing up on farms in Zimbabwe, Malawi and finally Zambia in the turbulent 70s and 80s. 'Safari Dreaming: An Africa Safari Experience In The South Luangwa' by Paul Joynson-Hicks is a beautiful coffee table book of stunning photographs taken in the South Luangwa at dawn, midday, dusk and night.
Zambia's traditional style of music is called Kalindula (a rumba inspired sound). Otherwise its very much a case of listening to Congolese 'soukous' blasting out everywhere.
Michael Palin's 'Pole to Pole' as he enters Zambia along Lake Tanganyika, before continuing through North Luangwa, to Victoria Falls.
Zambia's native cuisine is nshima, a type of porridge made from ground maize, but for those with a little adventure, fried termites are the way to go. In November at the start of the rainy season they are easy to collect. Rinse them in water, throw them in the frying pan for a minute, add some salt and serve them up. Positively delicious.
Mosi is definitely a highly recommended beer but for local people Chibuku is a real favourite. More like a milkshake this is quite an acquired taste and is a recipe for a seriously unhealthy hangover.
Muli bwanji (How are you?).
Night drives, Game walks, leopard sightings, Zambezi sunsets, thundering Falls, tiny bush camps, genets eyes, hippos honking.
Zambia is renowned for skilfully woven baskets from Western Province, malachite jewelery from the North and soapstone sculptures from Mukuni near Livingstone. Also don't forget Tribal Textiles on your way to Mfuwe airport.
Start planning your tailor-made holiday to Zambia by contacting one of our specialists...
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Further reading:Tours in ZambiaWhen to GoHighlightsItinerary IdeasPlaces to GoThings to DoAccommodationCountry Guides
Other countries in Africa:BotswanaKenyaMadagascarMalawiMauritiusMozambiqueNamibiaRwandaSouth AfricaTanzaniaThe SeychellesUgandaZanzibar ArchipelagoZimbabwe
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